For the past five years, some of the world’s leading mental health specialists have attempted to warn the public that Donald Trump was and continues to be a serious threat to public safety.
According to these experts, Trump appears to be a malignant narcissist, a pathological liar obsessed with violence, easily manipulated by the praise and other ego-stroking behavior, indifferent to the suffering of other human beings, anti-social and anti-human in his values and behavior, irresponsible and impulsive, and in laymen terms a “total psychopath.”
These mental health professionals warned that Trump’s numerous evident disorders will result in disaster and suffering for the American people and the rest of the planet.
They were nearly fully correct: Donald Trump destabilized and damaged American society and democracy. In reaction to the coronavirus outbreak, he took careless and imprudent decisions that bordered on open sabotage. These decisions may have resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Americans and a reduction in the average longevity of the population of the United States by several years.
He manipulated a presidential election by collaborating with a hostile foreign power. He attempted a coup, which included an attack on the US Capitol by his supporters. He was on the verge of destroying the American economy and presiding over a deeply corrupt dictatorship. Right-wing terrorism and various forms of political violence were inspired by and promoted by him. He is the leader of a political cult. He was impeached twice for various crimes against the Constitution and the country, which is unparalleled in American history.
Rather than being publically praised and rewarded for speaking the truth and trying to warn America and the rest of the globe, many of these mental health experts have received death threats and other forms of reprisal. At least one of these truth-tellers, psychiatrist Dr. Bandy X. Lee, editor of “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump,” lost her job at a prestigious university, in part because she persisted to warn the public about Donald Trump and his movement’s growing threat to public safety.
Many Americans, including the country’s political leaders, would rather forget about Trump’s presidency. However, such acts of collective forgetting will not protect them from the Republican Party’s intensifying assaults on American democracy, which are spearheaded by Trump.
Forgetting that mental health specialists foretold the Trump nightmare and everything it has brought about is a key component of this national amnesia effort.
Above all, Donald Trump is incapable of allowing America or the rest of the world to forget about him. Trump’s apparent mental illnesses motivate him to seek vengeance against those he perceives to be his enemies and those who he believes have harmed him.
Trump appears to be crafting half-baked plans to depose Joe Biden, even flirting with pledges from his loyalists that he will be “reinstated” as president later this year. Trump’s supporters, who account for more than half of all Republican voters, believe he is still the real president and that Biden is a usurper. Trump’s most fervent followers are Christian fascists and antisemitic QAnon conspiracy believers (two organizations that have a lot in common).
Professionals in the field of mental health predicted the same conclusion. They recognize that Trumpism is not a terminal illness that will vanish once Donald Trump is no longer president. Instead, Trumpism is a possibly fatal, chronic, and long-term mental, physical, and spiritual sickness afflicting the United States.
Dr. Lance Dodes recently spoke with Salon. Dodes is a training and supervising analyst emeritus at the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute, as well as a former assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. He is one of the most prominent voices warning the American people and the rest of the globe about Donald Trump’s harmful actions.
Donald Trump appears to be a psychopath, according to Dodes, and his dangerous behavior will only grow worse. Trump’s irrational ideas, he claims, feed the Republican Party’s disconnection from reality, as seen by the Big Lie, conspiratorial thinking, right-wing propaganda media, and other anti-democratic views and behavior.
Dodes also revealed his belief that Donald Trump considers himself to be a god, and that if he comes to power, he may try to establish an authoritarian police state.
When asked if Trump’s followers were addicted to him, he stated that “I don’t like to use the word “addiction” because it has a particular meaning. I would describe Trump’s most extreme devotees as members of a charismatic cult. Such cults unconditionally worship a charismatic leader who is often delusional with a grandiose, psychotic belief in his perfection, like Trump.
The followers close themselves off from accurate or rational information in order to protect their connection to the godlike cult leader and to avoid questioning his delusional views, which would cause them to be shunned or expelled from the group.”
Dodes adds that Trump is certainly a public mental health emergency, and “one that has occurred many times in human history. Followers adopt the belief system of a populist tyrant which becomes the new permitted reality, spreading to others who are swept up by their need to be included.
That belief system, however fantastical or delusional, remains accepted truth until it is finally shown to be false. Those who have been conned into believing the tyrant’s lies find comfort in their conviction that they know the truth, enabling them to feel superior to doubters.”
“He has been delusional for years, from the start of his presidency, when he claimed he had large crowds at his inauguration. But it’s important to add that besides being delusional, Trump’s behavior also reflects his deeply severe character disorder, his sociopathy. A person, after all, can be delusional and in no danger whatsoever to anyone else.
But the fact that Trump is a sociopath, a person without a conscience who is incapable of recognizing the inherent worth of other human beings, makes him the enormous danger he is. Trump has the worst of all worlds, one might say, psychotically grandiose and utterly uncaring about the harm he causes others. He is basically psychologically the same as the many infamous, cruel tyrants we know from recent and remote history.” Couldn’t agree more. Lock him up.